We had planned on needing to spend an entire day getting from Boquete to Panama City; all eleven hour journey via bus. But! At the last moment, we found out that there’s an overnight bus from David to Panama City. The last bus from Boquete to David is at 7:30pm and then there are busses every hour from David to Panama. We had wanted to depart at 11:30pm, but that was sold out so we left at 10:30pm instead. The bus was a breeze…literally, it was freezing. 5FT Tip: Bring a blanket!!! Due to it being an overnight bus, we made it to Panama City by 5:30am since there was no traffic – talk about cutting time! We had heard iffy things about the taxis in Panama City screwing you over, but a policeman hailed us a metered cab, and we got to our hostel with no problems. El Machico Hostel was awesome – the night guard unlocked the door, let us store our belongings, and told us we were more than welcome to nap in the hammocks or lounge on the couches until our room opened up.
I was actually impressed with Panama City overall. Many people I’d spoken with said they didn’t care for the city, but I was pleasantly surprised. After properly checking into our room, we took off to Panama Viejo – the remaining ruins of the old Panama City, and a UNESCO World Heritage Site. We got absolutely attacked by mosquitos, and it’s honestly not worth seeing. If you have time in Panama City, it’s the last thing you should do.
We only had a day in Panama City and so…we skipped the Panama Canal (since it was out of the way) and headed to Casco Viejo. This part of the city is absolutely gorgeous, filled with nice balconies and an overall cutesy feel. While it takes a bit of time, I recommend walking along the boardwalk from the heart of Panama City to Casco Viejo. If it’s a nice day, it offers interesting views and a lovely breeze, which is always welcomed in Central America! Once in Casco Viejo, we hit up a delicious ice cream parlor where I had lime sorbet and lavender ice cream – scrumptious! We wandered around the little markets for quite some time before walking back to our hostel at dusk.